April 14, 2024

Dental Care Reinvented: Harnessing the Power of Silver Diamine Fluoride

Dental decay is one of the most prevalent chronic diseases worldwide, especially among young children due to poor oral hygiene, and unhealthy eating habits. Decay or caries can be treated through fillings but this may require drilling the tooth for prepping it to receive an appropriate dental cement. 

Currently, the risk of dental caries can be significantly reduced through water fluoridation and fluoride-containing oral products.  Silver diamine fluoride offered by the children’s dentist in Fullerton is a great alternative to dental fillings to fight tooth decay.

What is silver diamine fluoride?

Silver diamine fluoride (SDF) is a liquid substance that helps to prevent the formation, growth, and spread of tooth cavities (caries). It is an FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved dental product that has been used since 2014. 

It is an antibiotic solution that consists of the following:

  • Silver: Kills bacteria and strengthens your dentin (protective layer of the tooth).
  • Fluoride: Helps in the remineralization of your tooth.
  • Water: Provides a liquid base for the mixture
  • Ammonia: Maintains the concentration of the solution.

What are the benefits of SDF?

Silver diamine fluoride (SDF) offers the following benefits:

  • It is the most comfortable alternative to drilling cavities
  • It is a versatile product since it prevents cavities, and can also halt the spread of an already existing caries
  • It is painless and non-invasive
  • The procedure for application is safe, quick, and simple
  • It is also useful in adults to reduce tooth sensitivity
  • Helpful for those who are over-sensitive to dental instruments, thus reducing dental anxiety
  • SDF is relatively inexpensive

How is silver diamine fluoride applied?

The application of SDF is a non-invasive procedure, involving the following steps:

  • The dentist will first clean, and rinse the tooth surface to remove any debris or plaque present over it. 
  • A cotton pad or gauze will be placed near your child’s affected tooth to keep the area dry. A vacuum suction tool will be used to control moisture. 
  • The dentist will apply the SDF solution directly to the tooth surface with a micro brush. 
  • Light curing will be used to make sure SDF sinks deeper into the tooth and hardens. 
  • Your child will be advised to refrain from eating or drinking for at least an hour after the SDF treatment. 

Science has advanced tremendously over the past decades and helped patients choose non-invasive alternative treatments over invasive, conventional methods involving teeth drilling. Silver diamine fluoride is an effective alternative to drilling and filling dental caries with excellent results and patient satisfaction.